The countdown to a new part of our journey has begun. All the dreams and desires that the Lord has placed in my heart are just within reach.
First will be the countless hours of learning the language and immersing myself in the culture. As much as I actually enjoy these two things, I know that they have a much bigger purpose than my entertainment: All of this is so that God can use me to better meet the needs of those for whom He has given me a passion.
I imagine their faces often: A single mom that lives across the hall. She finds her identity in so many things that are of this world and she doesn’t even know it. Maybe her identity is in being a mom, or maybe her job, or some cause or belief that she feels strongly about, perhaps atheism. I see how the Lord can take “chance” meetings in the hall and lead them to something more because He can give me a need for something that she can meet. Maybe she can help me understand things I am trying to read or give me directions to places I am trying to go. As the days move on, the Lord can open doors for deeper conversations, and allow me the opportunity to disciple her in what it looks like to live a life in obedience to Christ. She may not even realize it at first, but when she does, she realizes she wants more and wants to know this Christ I talk about, the One that meets me at every turn in my life.
Then I see the little older lady who lives downstairs. She lives alone, but God gives her a desire for company. So she doesn’t mind when I ask if she will teach me how to make delicious German dishes, or maybe Russian, or another of the 190 different people groups in Berlin. As we cook together, she enjoys talking about how she learned the recipes, about her childhood, sharing wisdom with me. After a time, the Lord also allows me to share the wisdom I have received from Him with her.
My thoughts move onto the waitress that I see regularly at the café, or the cashier at the grocery store. How will the Lord use our meeting? Then I go further; what about the prostitute around the corner? I would love to love on her, and show her the love of Christ, to show her that her identity and worth is not found in who these people tell her she is, to offer hope through Christ so that she can see that there is another way and that a life with Christ offers something so much better than what she has.
My heart wants to meet all of these women that I imagine meeting! I will be intentional in seeking out those whom God is calling me to walk beside, to love, to disciple, and to speak the truth of Christ to them. I can’t wait to see what God is going to do in the hearts of the people of Berlin!